Whenever a school year ends, SUSD teachers feel a sense of melancholy. We have to say “good-bye” to our students for the summer, and, in some cases, as they continue to pursue their education elsewhere.
Because of the unique challenges of the past three months, teachers and students have grown closer than ever to get though this unprecedented period.
This year that has made saying “farewell” to our young pupils especially difficult.
But it’s time for all of us to put the past several months behind us and move on.
As everyone knows, particularly parents, reopening schools will pose a new set of challenges. The details are under discussion at the Arizona Department of Education and school districts about how to ensure the health and safety of students, teachers and staff.
Locally, Dr. Scott Menzel, who officially starts his tenure as SUSD superintendent July 1, has invited representatives from our organization, the Scottsdale Education Association, to work with him during the summer.
Dr. Menzel has assured SEA that teachers’ voices will play a role in the decisions about the protocols of reopening schools --- plus having an ongoing voice in many of the future decisions for the school district.
We look forward to working closely with Dr. Menzel to share our thoughts and opinions with him. With his encouragement, SEA recently created a survey seeking teachers’ ideas and input regarding starting the new school year. The data is still being collected.
Once we have tabulated the responses, they will be a critical part of our conversations with Dr. Menzel and help guide many of the decisions that must be made.
Teachers are grateful to have had the cooperation of both students and their parents during this unforeseen crisis. Working together, we were all able to successfully achieve our goals and educational expectations.
We also learned a lot, much of which we will incorporate into how we move forward in August.
There is, of course, always room for improvement. More teaching adjustments have to be made. Every safety precaution must be considered. As they are, the safety of students and all SUSD personnel, as always, will be priority number one.
Editor’s Note: Kris Ambri is the president of the Scottsdale Education Association and teacher at Copper Ridge.